February WCAS Event Now Available Online

Surrender, February 20, 2021

 

Our recent WCAS event on or near February 20, 2021 was hosted at the following locations.  Please “join” us on You tube. You will be blessed by your laity colleagues from different parts of the world. We have also posted the links on our website, AffirmationSabbath.org.

 

Locations and You tube links

 

Clinton SDA Church Clinton, AR

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCo-K172NM_viFfoeO5Rsi3Q

 

Gridley SDA Church Gridley, CA

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCizemDNqTKj1T2wYwuSbeqA

 

Oroville SDA Church Oroville, CA

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCizemDNqTKj1T2wYwuSbeqA

 

Oroville Hmong SDA Church Oroville, CA

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCizemDNqTKj1T2wYwuSbeqA

 

Upper Ridge SDA Church Magalia, CA 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCizemDNqTKj1T2wYwuSbeqA

 

Athens WCAS Group Athens, TX

https://athenstx.adventistchurch.org/sermon-archives/item/7

 

Chewelah SDA Church Chewelah, WA

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOH_xorBnPD0e9TYkUgZN4A



 

Below are study materials we provided to our speakers and facilitators.

Theme: Surrender 

(This continues our previous theme: Anticipating the Latter Rain - What manner of persons ought we to be?)

As Jesus fully surrendered to His Father, we would also give ourselves completely to God. We would be as clay in the Potter's hands. This will cost all we have and are, and will yield precious and eternal rewards.

 

Jeremiah 18:6  O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.

 

John 5:30  I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.

 

No outward observances can take the place of simple faith and entire renunciation of self. But no man can empty himself of self. We can only consent for Christ to accomplish the work. Then the language of the soul will be, Lord, take my heart; for I cannot give it. It is Thy property. Keep it pure, for I cannot keep it for Thee. Save me in spite of myself, my weak, unchristlike self. Mold me, fashion me, raise me into a pure and holy atmosphere, where the rich current of Thy love can flow through my soul. { COL 159.3} 

It is not only at the beginning of the Christian life that this renunciation of self is to be made. At every advance step heavenward it is to be renewed. All our good works are dependent on a power outside of ourselves. Therefore there needs to be a continual reaching out of the heart after God, a continual, earnest, heartbreaking confession of sin and humbling of the soul before Him. Only by constant renunciation of self and dependence on Christ can we walk safely. { COL 159.4} 

The man works and co-operates with God; the grace of God is constantly at work with the consent of the agent to perfect a Christlike character. In the divine arrangement, God does nothing without the co-operation of man. He compels no man’s will. That must be given to the Lord completely, also the Lord is not able to accomplish His divine work that He would do through the human agency. Jesus declared that in a certain place He could not do many mighty works among the people because of their unbelief. He wanted to do for them in that place just what He knew that they needed to have done, but He could not because unbelief barred the way. The potter cannot mold and fashion unto honor that which has never been placed in his hands. The Christian life is one of daily surrender, submission and continual overcoming, gaining fresh victories every day. This is the growing up into Christ, fashioning the life into the divine model. { 1888 667.1}

 

Topics for Lay Speakers (20-25 minutes each, with slides/handouts; sample content provided):

 

1. Eternal Life - Knowing God

2. In the World - Kept From Evil

3. Unity - Oneness In Christ

 

Topic 1: Eternal Life - Knowing God

 

John 17:3  And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.

 

Jesus' intercession in John 17, just before Gethsemane, demonstrates His ultimate surrender to His Father. He models that vital connection His followers will need to the end of time.

 

In His prayer to the Father, Christ gave to the world a lesson which should be graven on mind and soul. “This is life eternal,” He said, “that they might know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent.” John 17:3. This is true education. It imparts power. The experimental knowledge of God and of Jesus Christ whom He has sent, transforms man into the image of God. It gives to man the mastery of himself, bringing every impulse and passion of the lower nature under the control of the higher powers of the mind. It makes its possessor a son of God and an heir of heaven. It brings him into communion with the mind of the Infinite, and opens to him the rich treasures of the universe. { COL 114.2}  

This scripture explains why men whose minds are occupied with worldly things do not give attention to things of eternal interest. Either God or Satan has the control of the intellect. If man sustains no vital relation to God, he reveals that he is connected with another leader, who is controlling his mind, and holding him in darkness, that he may not see the evidences of truth. The world can not receive the Spirit of truth, because they have not made the truth, which would make them wise unto salvation, their study. They can not receive truth, because they do not see Christ as the truth. They do not know him. “This is life eternal,” said Christ, “that they might know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.”  { RH July 18, 1899, Art. A, par. 6 }

“And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.” [John 17:3.] “I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.” [John 17:8.] Here is the work laid before us, to be representatives of Christ, as he in our world was the representative of the Father....We are in the antitypical day of atonement, and not only are we to humble our hearts before God and confess our sins, but we are, by all our educating talent, to seek to instruct those with whom we are brought in contact, and to bring them by precept and example to know God and Jesus Christ whom he hath sent. { CE 157.1 }

 

Topic 2: In the World - Kept From Evil

 

John 17:15  I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.

 

Before Christ went to His final conflict with the powers of darkness, He lifted up His eyes to heaven and prayed for His disciples. He said, “I pray not that Thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that Thou shouldest keep them from the evil. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy word is truth.” John 17:15-17. { CT 322.3}

The followers of Christ are to be separate from the world in principles and interests, but they are not to isolate themselves from the world. The Saviour mingled constantly with men, not to encourage them in anything that was not in accordance with God’s will, but to uplift and ennoble them. “I sanctify Myself,” He declared, “that they also might be sanctified.” John 17:19. So the Christian is to abide among men, that the savor of divine love may be as salt to preserve the world from corruption. { CT 323.1}

But our Lord does not deceive us. He does not say to us, “Do not fear; there are no dangers in your path.” He knows there are trials and dangers, and He deals with us plainly. He does not propose to take His people out of a world of sin and evil, but He points them to a never-failing refuge. His prayer for His disciples was, “I pray not that Thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that Thou shouldest keep them from the evil.” “In the world,” He says, “ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world ( John 17:15; 16:33).—Steps to Christ, 122.3 (1892) { 2MCP 479.2 }

 

Topic 3: Unity - Oneness In Christ

 

John 17:22-23  And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.

 

Wonderful, wonderful words, almost beyond the grasp of faith! The Creator of all worlds loves those who give themselves to His service, even as He loves His son. Even here and now His gracious favor is bestowed upon us to this marvelous extent. He has given us the Light and Majesty of heaven, and with Him He has bestowed all the heavenly treasure. Much as He has promised us for the life to come, He bestows princely gifts in this life. As subjects of His grace, He desires us to enjoy everything that will ennoble, expand, and elevate our characters. He is waiting to inspire the youth with power from above, that they may stand under the blood-stained banner of Christ, to work as He worked, to lead souls into safe paths, to plant the feet of many upon the Rock of Ages. { MH 405.4}

Christ desires His followers to reveal in their lives this same character. In His intercessory prayer for His disciples He declared: “The glory [character] which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one; I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me” ( John 17:22, 23). { AG 322.4} 

Today it is still His purpose to sanctify and cleanse His church “... that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing” ... ( Ephesians 5:26, 27). No greater gift than the character that He revealed, can Christ ask His Father to bestow upon those who believe on Him. What largeness there is in His request! What fullness of grace every follower of Christ has the privilege of receiving!... O that we might more fully appreciate the honor Christ confers upon us! By wearing His yoke and learning of Him, we become like Him in aspiration, in meekness and lowliness, in fragrance of character. { AG 322.5}